The world of work is changing rapidly. We see the major tech companies laying off tens of thousands of overpaid local engineers. The global workforce was brought top of mind with the pandemic, and it's been a long time trend. I saw some of this change over a decade ago with competitions for labor as an employee of TopCoder. Seeing some of the smartest engineers in the world do weeks of work for a chance at getting paid the prize was eye opening. I suggest taking the best of both worlds by hiring fractional executives and specialist contractors. Here I lay out the reasons to hire part time (1099/corp to corp/cash) vs full time (w2/salaried).
Best MVP Stack
There are countless technology stacks that can be used, some are better for certain tasks. Others are more popular, or more academically rigorous. Here, I'll lay out the case that 95% of MVPs should be built in a powerful, easy to write, popular framework. Python and Flask, Postgres, React (if necessary), Docker, Google Cloud Platform.
MVPs for Highly Regulated Industries
A number of industries create unique hurdles for startups and new products. They come in the form of compliance constraints, legal restraints, or regulatory red tape. It is possible to create disruption in these industries, and there are a few strategies that work particularly well for this. Industries that most reflect this type of compliance complexity are healthcare, finance, gambling, food supply, electricity, government or military contracts, some types of manufacturing, and transportation.
Two Sided Marketplace MVPs
A two sided marketplace is a product or website for two distinct demographics that engage in an economy based on their different needs. It can take many forms. Here I'd like to explore the types and what makes a successful marketplace MVP.
Getting Advice on Your MVP
As an entrepreneur, you're blazing a new path. This is definitional. If it's been done before, you wouldn't be needed. You have the responsibility to curate your influences and the things you want to effect your actions. Where should you seek advice? This is what I'd like to explore in this article.
Limitations of Unit Tests
Some developers are dogmatic using test driven development (TDD) philosophy. For MVPs, I think this is the wrong approach. Here I lay out some considerations for a solid development culture while you build your business. I will specifically focus on unit tests, tests that validate atomic components of an app.
MVPs for Crypto and Bitcoin
Crypto is a huge topic, and this format is too short to share comprehensive thoughts, but I want to dive into crypto MVPs, integrity, and the gap between the promise of crypto and its current reality.
Artificial Intelligence as a Perfect Solution
Artificial Intelligence will solve our problem. Lot's of entrepreneurs have a grand vision of how AI can solve any difficult problem for their business. This doesn't mean they're wrong, but the fields of AI and ML (machine learning) have many sub categories and areas of active research that allow us to make progress on quite specific computational tasks. Applying the wrong form of learning or problem solving to a task can produce underwhelming results. Tweaking and tuning a model or method is the way to get solid results and outpace your competitors in business use cases. I'd like to go through a few ML methods and what they're used for maybe to inspire some new ideas.
Web Automation Tools for New Business Use Cases
There are web automation tools that help with website acceptance testing, and user flow testing like selenium. There is an underutilized area of development that can leverage these technologies that abuses their power. The intended use case is to open a website that I own and test functionality that I programed into the website to ensure it's working correctly. However, this tool, and many like it can crawl and interact with any website, and you can inject python (or other language) logic in the middle of actions taken on your behalf on the website. I want to explore a tool I created to utilize this, and brainstorm some other uses that might create new business use cases.
Applying Old ML to Novel Businesses
Artificial intelligence and machine learning are disciplines that cover many methods and systems. There are a ton of powerful tools and libraries that have been built by technologists that are ripe for application to business tasks. There are places where these novel methods can be applied in profitable sectors.